- October 26, 2012
- By admin
- In Area History, Ghost Towns
La Fortuna Gold Mine the claim for the mine once sold for $700. The mine is located on a group of patented claims now within the Barry M Goldwater Gunnery Range which is owned by the U.S Bureau of Land Management by administered by the U.S. Marine Corps. Fortuna’s post office was established September 30, 1896 and discontinued November 20, 1904. Close to the Camino del Diablo aka the road of death, Fortuna was a lighthouse in the dark for thirsty miners in the Yuma area. The road was named as such due to the number of travelers that died trying to cross the desert. Water was very scarce, but when the Fortuna mine was found, a pump was set up at the Colorado river and water was pumped the 20 miles to the townsite. First located in 1894, the claim was worked until 1904, and then intermittently after that for the next 20 years. In its heyday the town has saloons, a hotel, and a stage and freight line. You can almost feel the thirst of the stage coach drivers as they finally rolled into Fortuna after traversing the Camino del Diablo. There are a few wells still there to this day. You must obtain a permit from the Marine Corps Station to visit this site.
Directions Take I-8 from Yuma to the Fortuna exit. Turn right on the frontage road which will parallel I-8. Approximately one mile east of the Foothills Boulevard the road crosses a wash and will before dirt. Continue several miles and the road will fork but you may take either one because they will intersect after a few miles again. Fortuna lies in the Gila Mountains about ten miles south of the access road. You will find a water reservoir, old house foundations and some stone walls where the remains of the town stood.
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